The traditional interpretation of Jesus' story is mankind is sinful and needed a savior. Some denominations teach that we are born with original sin, inherited from Adam, and there is no hope of being sinless. The sinless part is important because God can't tolerate sin and must punish the sinful. This is where Jesus comes in. He is a human sacrifice for the sin of the world. So the manger picture is a reminder that this child was born to be killed as a sacrifice to God for the shortcomings of mankind.
What if we missed it? What if that isn't what Jesus' intended as his message?
Read more Faces, vases and mangers
I survived the Ridgecrest California earthquakes of 2019. Actually, the aftershocks are ongoing and I'm feeling one as I type this post. Hopefully, the big stuff is over and we can get back to normal life. The earthquakes caused lots of damage but much of that can be repaired. What is more profound than broken glass and cracked walls is the impact on the human psyche. I've lived in California for 19 years and have experienced many minor earthquakes. I've felt a little shaking, swaying in my chair, heard a boom or even heard stuff rattling in the room. If there was someone in the room I'd ask them "was that an earthquake?" we would compare experiences and then go back to whatever we were doing. What happened in Ridgecrest was not like those minor earthquakes.
Read more Cavemen and Earthquakes
Your brain is a great separator. It separates stuff into categories. It separates good from bad. It separates likes from dislikes and desires from repulsions. We need it to survive. We need the thinking mechanism of the brain tool to keep us well and safe and fulfilled. It is not however a good tool for waking up, enlightenment, satori, salvation, being born again or any other way of describing the experience of heaven on earth or nirvana. You can't discover ultimate truth with a conditioned brain.
Read more Correct tool for the task
What you are is not just your story. You are the source of your story. You are the consciousness that is aware of your story. Jesus would say you are spirit and flesh, source and manifestation. You are already complete exactly as you are including everything you think you are not...
Read more Perfection
When you embrace my divine wisdom you are mindful and have the capacity to see clearly. You will come to experience the reality of who and what you are. That reality of oneness will set you free from the bondage of the egoic illusion of separateness. (FST)
Read more Flip Side
To be awake is to be free of the dream. To be enlightened is to live as a transparent form emanating the eternal light from within. To be conscious is to be aware of the awareness you are. To be free is to no longer identify with ego and discover your true self.
We use words like transcendence and transmutation and transfiguration to describe in concepts what is the emerging of the formless within the illusory world of form. We let go of our identity with form, ego, body, mind and the person. We wake up to see the form, body, mind and person as manifestations of our true self.
Jesus described this awakening of consciousness as being born again. Isn't that description appropriate for waking up, being enlightened, becoming conscious and finding freedom? We are born again of water (entry into the physical realm) and spirit (awakening to the true self). Jesus described awakening as salvation. The word he used in its various forms was "sozo." This word means "to make whole."
Read more Pointers to the formless: BOREDOM
If you are a “spiritual” blogger, you have to write a Christmas post, right? If life has reached a critical stage, then there must be an event, right? If the pressure gets too high in the nuclear reactor cooling system, then “it’s gonna blow!” (Cue the dramatic music and images of a frantic control room trying to turn the correct dial in the right order to avoid disaster).
Read more Pointers to the Formless: a child is born
Jesus used a few different words that are translated as "knowing" or "to know" in the Christian bible. In the original language the Greek words can be translated as other than "knowing" or colors of knowing. Sometimes Jesus "knew" something as an observation or an understanding or a perceiving. Sometimes his "knowing" was like our modern expression of how we would describe our relationship with form. He "knew" concepts just like we do. But sometimes he used a special word. This word (translated as "to know") is a word that implied intimate experiencing. As an example: "Adam knew Eve and they had a child."
This kind of intimate knowing is why the formless manifests as form to know the formless.
And they said, “Why do you speak to them in parables?” And he answered them, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven
Read more Pointers to the formless: KNOWING
The mind attempts to go deeper and deeper looking for the indivisible root cause. It believes there is always a singular truth to any circumstance. It creates an absolute paradigm of "good" and "bad" so it can manipulate the next moment to bring only "good" and exclude the "bad." Seeking truth from this perspective will bring us to truth but it is an indirect path. We look through our electron microscopes to discover the indivisible and the root cause that we believe will allow us to predict every moment, but what we find is randomness. The indivisible doesn't exist. Cause and effect don't work. We even create concepts to describe what we can't understand like quantum and relativity. The indirect path brings us to paradox.
The direct path is paradox. When we follow the pointers to truth, we find the end of our minds. Paradox takes us beyond our minds where truth can be experienced for what it IS. We can take the long way around the mountain by the path of the mind or take the shortcut through paradox.
Read more Pointers to the formless: PARADOX
As the ego, we are telling ourselves a story. We are believing we are the story. We are most often asleep to the truth that we are not the story but the awareness that is experiencing the story. I know this kind of language is difficult to process and can actually create more confusion. As the ego, we want to plan and control. The ego's purpose is to plan and control. It is a survival mechanism that is ultimately trying to avoid death. When we begin to wake up, the ego will want to take ownership of the awakening and try to "do" something to awaken (or at least take credit for the awakening). But we are not the ego. The awakening is leaving the ego behind. An ego can't wake up. The absence of a false identity is the waking up experience. It is like something leaves that has always been there and the space that remains is our true self, the divine awareness "we" are. The "am-ness" of the I am.
Read more Pointers to the formless: ears to hear